Wednesday, 25 January 2012
Since 23rd January, Paris is in turmoil for the beginning of festivities linked to the new Chinese year! Yes because here in Paris there is a big Chinese community, who lives in three "Chinatowns": one around the 13 arrondissement in the south part of the town, one in the norther part of the Marais district, and another one in the core of Belleville. Each of these communities organize each years a series of parties, of expositions, and of cultural activities in order to celebrate the arrival of the new year. And most important, they perform also the traditional "Dragon parade", a real Chinese show that "floods" the Parisian streets. You can find the full program of these festivities here.
2012 is for the chinese culture the year of the Dragon: this mythological animal is for Chinese people the symbol of power, harmony, health, and, most important, of luck. Indeed, Dragon years are considered the luckiest in the Chinese lunar zodiac... and as fas as Dragon is such as a good omen, I have produced a hand carved rubber stamp with the shapes of a little cute Dragon to celebrate this year, which I hope it would really lucky!
Since the beginning of year is usually a time during which to believe in good omens, I have also carved a stamp set representing a Daruma (or Dharma) Doll. This is a Japanese doll that is traditionally believed a talisman of good luck. This doll is made without eyes; when you express a wish, you have to color only one eye: the doll will help you to realize it for having its missing eyes. Indeed, if the wish will realize, you have to thank the doll making the other one. Otherwise, these dolls can represent also a symbol of perseverance: drawing a eye when you settle a goal will help you to stay concentrate on this goal until when it will be fulfilled - and you will draw the other eye to show your achievement. I hope that you like both the Dragon and the Daruma Doll, you can find them on my etsy.